Crossing the streets of a busy city like Chicago can be extremely dangerous. Trucks and other large vehicles often cannot see as well as other drivers due to the size of their vehicles, they cannot slow down and brake as quickly, and the impact causes much more severe damage than smaller cars. These kinds of crashes often cause severe injuries, large amounts of property damage, or even death.

A fatal accident occurred on the Northwest side of Chicago near the Hermosa neighborhood.

Pedestrian hit by a dump truck while crossing the street

In the middle of the day, the victim was in the crosswalk of the 2100 block of North Pulaski Road. A dump truck was going southbound through the same intersection and hit the 32 year old male victim. The injuries caused him to immediately be pronounced dead on the scene, but the Cook County medical examiner’s office had not yet released any details about specific trauma, wounds, or anything else that may have contributed to his death.

The truck driver received a citation for not stopping at a stop sign at the intersection, failure to yield to a pedestrian, and failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident. The truck driver did stop and cooperate with law enforcement after the accident, and he was not charged criminally. The Chicago Police Department also sent the major accidents unit to investigate the crash further. The victim’s identity was not released.

Accidents where citations and charges are issued by the police

When accidents are the fault of a driver who received traffic citations or criminal charges related to the incident, this evidence can be used in the civil trial. It will not automatically win the case, but it is helpful to the plaintiff as evidence of negligence. There is usually a separate analysis to make sure that the injured person is in the class of people the traffic law was designed to protect.

However, in most motor vehicle accidents, offenses such as speeding and running through stop signs are always relevant to injuries to people and damage to other cars. The traffic citations will usually help to show that the driver at fault breached their duty of care on the roads and caused the accident. Negligence is the legal term for the breach of duty that results in some kind of damage to people or property, and this is the framework for most civil injury lawsuits.

Accidents that result in the death of at least one victim

While someone is no longer around to file a lawsuit in their own name after they die during an accident, a personal injury lawyer can assist the family with a special type of lawsuit for this situation.

There is a specific type of lawsuit called a wrongful death action that allows a spouse, parent, or children to file the case in the deceased person’s place. This works much like a standard negligence lawsuit, where they can ask for damages related to hospitalization and medical bills, funeral expenses, lost wages and future income, along with non-economic damages related to the trauma and emotional pain and suffering that the family has to endure. In cases where the defendant acted recklessly or intentionally, there may be additional punitive damages available. This means the family will receive a larger amount as a way of punishing the defendant for improper behavior.

Illinois has its own wrongful death statute that governs these claims in the Chicago area and throughout the state. These are essentially personal injury claims that are filed when someone dies at work, from medical malpractice, a car accident, or other types of incidents including when someone intentionally harms the victim. If someone is charged with a crime such as murder or vehicular manslaugher, that process is handled separately by the criminally courts and the person or business responsible can be sued regardless of the outcome of the criminal case.

Wrongful death claims must be made within two years from the date the victim died, so it is important to contact a lawyer as soon as realistically possible after the accident.

How much is a deadly accident worth?

Each case is different and it is impossible to give monetary estimates or specific advice without first contacting a lawyer and giving them some important details about your situation. You may be required to provide medical records or other evidence to help prove the value of lost services. As a general rule, it is best to follow the attorney’s instructions and stay in touch with them until the conclusion of the case for the best chance at winning.

Talk to a local Chicago accident attorney

If you have been injured by a driver anywhere in the Chicago metro area, there is help available. Budin Law Offices can look at the facts surrounding your accident and provide personalized advice about how to proceed with a lawsuit or other measures.